How to Select the Right Criminal Lawyer
Today, there are many attorneys who handle criminal cases, hence; finding the right attorney for your case can be daunting. Below are some guidelines to help you find a reputable criminal defense attorney.
Before making any hiring decision, you first need to come up with a list of potential criminal defense attorneys. A good way to find a criminal lawyer is by contacting a bar association near you as they are likely to know attorneys who have been licensed to practice criminal law in your area. Also, if you have friends, family members or colleagues who have a criminal case before, they may refer you to reputable attorneys. Lastly, you can conduct online searches and use reviews sites as they may be a good source for referrals. It is a good idea to find an attorney with the local knowledge because they are more likely to know the judges, prosecutors and the regulations of the area.
Another thing that you need to consider is the number of years that the attorney has been practising criminal law. It is important to choose a criminal defense attorney who has experience dealing with related cases. It may be wise to ask about their speciality and consider an attorney who practices your type of criminal case exclusively.
In most cases, it’s also important to consider the reputation of the attorney before you hire them. You will want to read the online reviews of clients who have used the attorney’s services before. Besides, it is essential to check their ethical record and ensure that they have no disciplinary action against them by the state. If an attorney has been disbarred, do not hire their services as they may not be allowed to represent you in court.
Research their educational background and find out whether they went to an accredited law school as this shows that they have been properly trained to handle the criminal cases in their field. You may also want to hire an attorney who has been licensed to practice in your state otherwise; they may not be able to represent you in court.
When your list of potential attorneys is narrowed, meet up with the remaining ones for an in-person consultation. A good attorney will access your case and give you a good idea of what to expect. Be certain who will be working on your case beforehand. Select an attorney that you feel most comfortable with and one who has good communication skills.
Know what the legal fees are in order to help you make the right choice. You should also ask if the fees are charged at an hourly rate or a flat rate basis. Do not forget to ask if there are any additional fees to avoid disappointments later on.